The Triangulum

Have you heard of The Triangulum? The Triangulum refers to the interconnected relationship between tobacco, cannabis, and vaping/e-cigarettes.

With the rapid rise of vapes and other delivery systems for tobacco and cannabis use, the landscape of “smoking” has changed significantly.

Today, tobacco, cannabis and vaping are often related and used together. For example, a person might smoke a joint that contains both cannabis and tobacco, or use a vape that contains cannabis abstracts.

It is common for youth to use both tobacco and cannabis, either at the same time, one after the other, or in combination with other substances, especially since vaping devices for both tobacco and cannabis are widely available and can often be used for multiple substances.

In California, more young people now use e-cigarettes than traditional cigarettes, and cannabis use is higher than all tobacco use combined.1 There is a strong link between using tobacco and cannabis.

Additionally, the tobacco and cannabis products themselves and delivery systems, including vapes, edibles, combustible wraps, tinctures, are constantly changing, making it difficult for the consumer to understand the potency and risks associated with use.

Historically, resources and support for tobacco use and cannabis use have been separate, largely due to distinct funding sources. However, understanding how tobacco, cannabis and vaping are linked is essential, and helps us find better ways to prevent and reduce their use, especially among young people.

The Triangulum framework compels us to reduce the silos around different substances, and offer comprehensive drug education, prevention, and intervention that recognizes the intersections and complexity.